Tenth Step: Reining Back Our Keyboards and Words

blog|website: www.livingtwelvestepsrecovery.com

KINDLE http://www.amazon.com/dp/

NOOK http://Bn.com/ 2940012874856

Time Alone: By Denise Young on Pandora

In his “Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions” (AAWS 36th Printing 2002) Bill Wilson warns us: ‘For the wise have always known, no-one can make much of their lives until self-searching becomes a regular habit. The Emotional Hangover is the direct result of yesterday’s and sometimes today’s excessive emotions–anger, fear, jealousy. Nothing pays off like restraint of pen and tongue.’

First, if all you read was the Big Book, you got three paragraphs on pg 84-85 (3rd Edition – 1976) and sure, the information was good alright, but mentions nothing of the insights above: an eight page essay. Bill had learned a lot in 10 years, as we all hope to go on doing throughout our lives.

Continuous Inventory is our process of change. What we hear and read: we listen to and study. What we listen to and study- we practice. What we practice – we learn. What we learn – we believe and what we believe — we eventually become.

None of it does any good if we don’t exert a continued effort to make this our default behavior. We’re about to try and make this our new response instead of resorting to our old knee-jerk reactions. Surely, it will take patience and tolerance with ourselves.

Even though it sounds like a children’s story of lore, “Counting to ten or 100” and taking some deep breaths to calm ourselves BEFORE we respond,…. is the best way to turn that Neanderthal part of our Ego (the Id – thanks, Dr. Sigmund F.) into that open-minded, emotionally balanced Homo Sapiens Ego (the Super Ego) which Freud tells us is the part of self that guides us in our becoming social with other members of society This, so that we don’t drool, rant, and throw feces at them by paranoically jumping the gun, only to find our childish emotional reactions have been premature, inappropriate and even dead wrong. This,…..is what this writer sees as the crux of Step Ten – (and don’t even think after ten years I have it down or all sorted out. I don’t).

In closing, here’s another reading from the book: “Living the 12 Steps of Recovery – One Day at a Time – As it Was in the Beginning,” (Wing & a Prayer Publishing, October 2010). It’s a Classic Revival of all our near 80 year old principles, in daily affirmations on each of the steps and traditions, in a monthly rotation.

It tells you. It tells you it told you, and then it tells you again using classical sonata form as a learning tool: introduction, expansion and recapitulation.

October 24

Self-Searching is the Method By Which We Learn

When we feel ourselves getting tangled up in pride, anger, and fear, we’ll realize our emotional balance is tilted. That’s when we step back and think, applying the admission and correction of errors, doing it in the now, instead of ipso facto (after the fact). After having some term of practice, it will automatically occur to us when we’re disturbed that something is also wrong with us.

In all unbalanced moments we will need self-restraint, honest analysis, a willingness to admit, and compassion to forgive. Our first objective will become self-restraint, in particular of pen and tongue (which often is now keyboard)  for there is no room for quick-tempered criticism or power-driven argument, nor can we immerse ourselves in sulking or silent scorn.

We will realize that justified anger is not something we can handle nor separate from a potential flash of rage or frenzy. It seems for us, all these conditions are emotional booby traps, each baited with possible knee-jerk pride and vengefulness.

In time, we will become aware that like ourselves, all people are to some extent emotionally sick and frequently wrong. When we witness this in ourselves and others, we learn to apply the virtues of patience, kindness, justice, and love in an effort to bring about harmony. Our objective is going to become an honest regret for harms done, a genuine gratitude for blessings received, and a willingness to forgive and try for better tomorrows.

Finally, we note that at least some things have been done well in our day. Searching our hearts with neither fear nor favor, we can then lay ourselves to rest in good conscience.

Wishing all the best of contentment – joy in our lives of recovery

Arthur Messenger


First Anniversary of Publishing 10-6-2011

Happy Anniversary

Happy lst Anniversary: "Living the 12 Steps of Recovery" October 6th 2011


*Check out the video link at left for good anniversary music

“Living the 12 Steps of Recovery” celebrates it’s first anniversary”

blog|website: www.livingtwelvestepsrecovery.com

On October 6th, 2010 I stood in my garage watching the truck-driver unloaded the first pallet of 1,000 books. I was broke, in debt, not knowing whether to be joyful or seriously afraid. It was some of both.
I had no publisher but myself, with no experience but my own little one book company: Wing & A Prayer Publishing. I thought in that moment: “Well, at least I can count on an open-minded fair exposure to the fellowship of AA, because I was carrying the message”! I had spent six years organizing the principles, concepts and history into daily meditations on the Steps & Traditions, with steady positive periodic reviews. There were, however some eye-opening surprises in store for me.
Mine was NOT a book of my recovery experience, but a classical revival of our near 80 year old principles in monthly rotation. It was to be as if an old and loved pair of shoes had been to the cobbler for “re-souling” and buffing, coming out just like new with nearly a dozen AA’s and big-time editors in the Chicago Style Manual reviewing, chopping and chirping it up and down.
But first, I had original drawings, which AAWS in NYC didn’t like, even though they had progressed in anonymity to using video themselves. Fortunately for me, the Copyright Administration ruled that drawings, as conceptions of the artists eye, were considered anonymous. I finally, with a heavy heart had to tell them I couldn’t work with them and was moving on. The same re-action, one of narrow-mindedness, was typical in my own fellowship’s community, at first. They shunned the work with the same old worn out criticisms: I was trying to re-write the Big Book, which couldn’t be farther from the truth(before they even cracked the cover). But I had my loyal band of supporters and they were growing.
Then I submitted it to ITR and with RT and the gangs review was selected for BOTM for March 2011. The community here and now worldwide, has opened their arms to the work, with many very positive reviews amongst the first 1,000 readers. The others all want to now if it’s conference approved, which it was entered into in Area 92 of Eastern Washington last January.
Today, this addition to any recovering person’s reading room has made it’s way to Canada, 20 US States, AU, UK, and Europe as well as South Africa. The readership grows a little each week, as I didn’t take the Big Box Publishing approach, even after being considered by AAWS and Hazleden.
I know that there are those of you reading who have it and refer to it everyday as I do myself, keeping the principles alive in your mindful attitude of recovery. Here then, is today’s reading on the Tenth Step, for all those who have not yet gotten a copy.

October 6
Reviewing Our Assets and Liabilities
Whether our lives bring fair weather or foul, we attempt to put our
A.A. way of life to practical use on a day-by-day basis. The time has
come for the acid test: Can we stay sober, maintain our emotional balance,
and live to good purpose under any and all conditions?
Part of our system for achieving those goals involves continuous
viewing of our assets and liabilities while acquiring a real desire to
adapt to these means. We have found this attitude is a necessity for
us all.
When we were drunks, we could not live well after awakening with
a terrific hangover from yesterday’s heavy drinking. Whether we are
drinking or not, there is another kind of hangover that we will all
experience at some point. It can become nearly as obsessive as our
penchant for the drink. We find it in the results of past and present
excesses of negative emotions, all brought to bear by anger, fear, jealousy,
and the like. Any chance of living in serenity today and in all our
tomorrows will hinge upon efforts to rid ourselves of these spiritual
Don’t get the wrong idea. This does not mean we should wander
morbidly about in our past. It requires a review of our assets and liabilities
and an admission and correction of errors, as we live in the